My husband finally got to where I wanted him to be decluttering-wise. I've been working on it since 1995
. Actually just today he was talking to friends of ours about how great it was to get rid of some stuff (another car load just after opening Christmas presents) and I was really impressed. He told them that saying "get rid of stuff" was the worst thing for him to hear and that it makes him shut down and not look at the stuff. But, when approached about a closet, the back room, or the shed, etc. (as in a small portion of the house) so long as I say we can only keep what will fit on certain shelves or in some specific space he can work with that. Also it helps if the process is fast, as in park your car closest to the door and pile things in the trunk during business hours of the place you'll be dropping it off all in the same couple of hours. He seems to be getting a little more practical finally! (But, just when will he get rid of (I mean run out of room for) the plaid, patchwork flannel jacket he hasn't worn since we lived in Vermont in 1998?!?)
I believe, and I think my dh does too, that opening up space in our house, removing stuff that we don't need/use/love, opens up room in our lives for new opportunities and opens us up to even getting new things that we love more. He told me at the recycling center that he was so relieved to bring 3 old laptops and a bunch of other non working computer stuff and that he hadn't realized how much it had been burdening him. I guess I have just rambled on to tell you that it may work out in the end just by you setting an example and being ridiculously patient.